Archive for the ‘Gluten Free’ Category

What do you think of this assessment of gluten-free diets? ABC NEWS Is Gluten-Free Healthy?
I found the info a bit off and the one-size fits all assessment of gluten-free diets very off. It’s true that we get great nutrients from high quality gluten containing foods but we can also get them from high quality gluten-free foods too.  YES you CAN have a very healthy gluten-free diet if you choose nutrient-rich whole ORGANIC foods – many of which naturally contain nutrients like calcium and B vitamins that the doctor in this segment said could be deficient in a gluten-free diet (and what’s more important is that many of our best sources of calcium come from foods in nature that naturally have no gluten in them!).

When it comes to who can benefit from a gluten-free diet, practitioners like myself continuously see that there are people who are gluten intolerant or who have an auto-immune disease where avoiding or reducing gluten intake improves their symptoms. These individuals still need to focus on other components of the diet such as reducing known irritants and choosing anti-inflammatory foods, but gluten still appears to play a key role.

Net net, not all gluten-free products are created equal so not all gluten-free diets should be compared as equals. Organic, whole food, mostly plant-based diets provide nutrition for optimal health – it’s what I call a qualitarian diet — and if you add to it gluten-free because that’s an issue for you, you can gain health improvements overall as well.

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Natural and organic products industry sales hit $76 billion.
Even in tough economic times, the natural and organic products industry reports 4.8 percent growth.

BOULDER, Colo. (June 2, 2010) – Natural Foods Merchandiser magazine’s June Market Overview reports sustained growth for the natural and organic products industry. With more than $76 billion in total revenues last year, the industry grew 4.8 percent from 2008, despite an economy that saw many consumer-spending categories decline.

This research shows that certain categories are experiencing double-digit growth. Gluten-free food sales, for example, grew 12 percent over the previous year, proving this growing segment is more than a food fad. Dietary supplements continued to be top sellers, and categories like digestive health experienced almost 16 percent growth as consumers showed strong interest in condition-specific health areas, including heart health and immunity.

“Overall, consumer concerns about health and wellness in the face of rising medical costs are driving interest and demand for healthy foods, dietary supplements, personal care items and other natural and organic products,” said Anna Soref, editor-in-chief of Natural Foods Merchandiser. “I believe these positive numbers for the natural and organic products industry in a tough year like ’09 demonstrate that the industry is recession proof.”

The Natural Foods Merchandiser’s 2010 Market Overview is a comprehensive report detailing sales results for the natural and organic products industry. In addition to overall spending figures, the Market Overview also reports results by product segments, average sales per store and overall business statistics for natural products retailers.

In addition to its own proprietary research, the Natural Foods Merchandiser Market Overview incorporates sales data from SPINS, a Schaumburg, Ill., based market research firm, and interviews with a variety of industry experts, such as Steven Mister, president and CEO of the Washington, D.C.-based Council for Responsible Nutrition.

Also included in the Market Overview are the results from a recent survey conducted by iVillage/Delicious Living magazine. Researchers polled almost 5,000 women about their attitudes on health, and how those attitudes influence purchasing decisions and brand selection.

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New study draws some concern over gluten-free diets (Read more at: celiacdisease.about.com). My comment: I’m so glad and not surprised.

As discussed in detail in The G-Free Diet by Elisabeth Hasselbeck, following a gluten-free nutrition plan is about a lot more than just removing gluten from the diet. To heal the digestive system (and maintain a healthy digestive system), as well as to reduce risk of other chronic diseases and to maintain a healthy weight, it is critical to look at the following: a) quality, b) quantity, c) nutrient balance and d) frequency. (more…)

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I’m so excited to be sitting at the View as Elisabeth reveals her book – the G-Free Diet (G stands for gluten)- for which I contributed the nutrition.

We’ve come a long way in the G-Free world. With great tasting products that also meet the needs of those following a G-Free Diet. Using the best, I designed AKA goodie bags for the audience of the View, and while you didn’t get one, I wanted to share what it contained. Then read on for some key points about a G-Free diet.

  1. Amys kitchen makes G-Free frozen meals (great to have on hand), and salsas, beans, and soups
  2. Lundberg Farms Rice Chips are a great snack treat (15 grams is a portion) and you can dip it into guacamole for a healthy fat
  3. Envirokidz and Natures Path- organic and gluten-free… And delicious too?! Are we dreaming?! Bars and cereals to choose from
  4. Allergaroo – dinners designed for kids with food allergies, they taste great and are very convenient
  5. Align – a probiotic may be helpful, the right probiotic is critical. The Bifantis strain aids all 5 digestive complaint symptoms
  6. Ians cookies and bar – great tasting and convenient small packs
  7. Enjoy Life – an excellent source for allergy-free foods from cookies to chocolates and more
  8. Glutino – another excellent source of G-Free products that satisfy as much as the G-containing foods do – I included the pretzels…a favorite
  9. Natural Calm magnesium – this mineral is critical to overall health but especially digestive wellness and we lose it in food processing and when avoiding grains. The RIGHT kind of magnesium without any fake stuff, Natural Calm continues to be my number one recommended choice
  10. WoW bakery – mmmmm, baked G-F goods
  11. Coconut Bliss ice cream – you’ve heard me rave about it before, but the fact that its G-Free makes it all the better.
  12. Healing Movements Cultured vegetables and Coconut Kefir – what any digestive system needs to stay healthy, these naturally probiotic-rich foods are delicious and highly effective.

That’s all for now…more G-Free to come

The most important thing to remember when following a G-Free Diet is that the SAME nutrition concepts for optimal health hold true for you as someone eating Gluten. Yup! I said it…the SAME rules.

  1. 1) Eat foods closest to their nature-made form. (An apple vs apple juice vs apple leather / roll-up vs apple sour patch kids…you get my drift)
  2. Aim for nutrient balance: Some carb-protein-healthy fat + unlimited vegetable at each eating occasion …caution, it can be easy with some G-Free product only diets to miss out on your protein and healthy fats…this will not lead to optimal energy, weight, and health
  3. Pit Stops versus Fill-Ups. For optimal efficiency and to prevent storage we need to refuel with only enough energy to use about every 3 hours. Don’t let yourself run on empty or “backload” (a term I coined meaning eat lightly all day and get all your calories at night)

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